I am a Cambodia Expert Now

So after 8 days in the country, I can now answer a few questions with some confidence (and a ton of questions without any confidence whatsoever). Here are the common first ones asked by my online friends.

Why Cambodia?

Why not? I've always wanted to go there and see it, even though it wasn't super-high on my list. Truth is, by the time we all synchronized our schedules for time off work, the only tickets even available out of Taiwan to Southeast Asia were to Cambodia. So in some ways, we were destined to visit there.
What's in Cambodia?

34C temperatures in the dead of winter. A lot of poor people. Sandstone (and the dust of). And, of course, Angkor (more here, including Angkor Wat and others.
How's the pho?

Uh, pho?? There's no pho in Cambodia to speak of; that's Vietnam where the good pho is. To me, Cambodian food is an uninteresting mix of Thai and Indian. Not that the food isn't good -- I like Thai food, and I love Indian food -- but that there isn't a whole lot that is particularly unique to the region. With the exception of amok fish (one recipe here).
Is it cheap there?

Yup, stuff is cheap: meals for $1.50US, hotels for as low as $8 a night, etc. But I know it could be cheaper, because those are the tourist prices, and there's a major discrepancy between that and the local prices. And I hate feeling like I'm getting taken for a ride just because I'm a foreigner. For instance, we paid twice what we should have for a bus service between cities; it was cheap anyway, even at $6 a person, but I didn't like the idea of getting scammed.
Did you guys have fun?

Of course! We packed the first few days with Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Angkor -- including a few early mornings to watch the sunrise -- and then slowly started to tone down the energy level as we went down the week. At the end, we were generally all suffering from "temple burnout" and partook in foot massages instead. Eventually, I got tired of every brother and his mother trying to sell us "traditional Khmer" this, "traditional Khmer" that. Oh, and wandering local markets, bargaining for hours on end for that last $0.25US for the trinket -- "it's not the money, it's the principle"!
Did you take lots of photos? Are they up yet?

Yes and no, respectively. I think my "yes" also answers why I haven't uploaded yet.
Are Cambodian chicks hot?

Okay, nobody asked this (explicitly), but I'll just say that they're not really my style. Some are definitely pretty, though.

Okay, that's it for now. More insights later. But for now, Taiwan sure seems pretty clean in comparison.


Ce said...

Your questions of "Did you take lots of photos?" and "Are Cambodian chicks hot?" sparks an even better question:

Did you take lots of photos of hot Cambodian chicks ?

If so, prioritize those when it comes to posting pics!

Rich and Angel said...

Most likely, the pictures of hot Cambodian girls worth showing are the ones he can't show to the world!

Ben said...

I'm slowly getting to the Cambodia pictures. I'm still some 3 months behind on uploading photos; you can see that my Flickr is very slowly getting updated with pictures from back in October/November now. I will prioritize Cambodia higher, though, because I want to get my pics cleaned up, and this weekend, my siblings will pass me theirs so I can fill in the photos I missed with my own cam.

Anyway, there are no pictures (to my recollection) of hot Cambodian chicks. Except for maybe one rubbing our feet. There are, however, some pictures of Cambodian children wandering the beaches / streets / markets. And some of them are in their birthday suits, frolicking.

Rich and Angel said...

Uhhh....I wouldn't be posting pictures of children, even if for artistic value.

Ben said...

Uh, they're not those kind of pictures. They're just babies running around. And if you even get any kind of sexual inkling out of those pictures, you have serious problems.

Rich and Angel said...

Speak for yourself. I'm not the one taking pictures of naked babies.

Ben said...

Nope. I am. Think of me as a National Geographic photographer, taking pictures in a genuine effort to capture the essence of a faraway land and bring it to an audience back home.

Except, without the photography talent. Nor the expensive equipment. And on a serious budget, both temporally and financially.